Danielle Jack, Age 30.

Completed associate degree in occupational therapy. Worked as an occupational therapist assistant. Currently pursuing her B.A. in occupational therapy with Cody, her re-admissions coordinator from ReUp.

Q. What challenges have you faced during the course of your college studies?

The biggest challenge has been finances. It’s definitely kept me from completing my B.A. After I got my associate degree in 2008 in CODA (certified occupational therapist assistant), I started working right away, full-time, and started paying as much as I could toward my student loans. It seemed like I was barely making a dent. I thought I’d never have the money or time to go back to school so I could get my B.A. in occupational therapy.

Q . What prompted you to continue to pursue your degree?

I had no intentions to go back to school because of all the debt. But I got an email from an old friend (Cody) saying “Hey, do you want to go back to school?” (I used to be Cody’s cheerleading coach when he was in HS.) That’s when I first heard about readmissions coordinators.

Q. What changed your mind about returning to school?

It was Cody who changed my mind, my readmissions coordinator at Clarion. He told me about all the ways he could help me come up with a good plan to return to college. He showed me lots of options to manage my current debt and budget for the future and apply for grants and financial aid ... stuff I never even knew existed!

Q. What has been the biggest revelation so far working with your readmissions coordinator? 

That there are so many options for people like me, who have a ton of student debt. I didn’t even realize! Cody helped guide me to all the processes of getting my finances in order, like looking at grants and other financial options. I asked him if he was giving me extra attention because we’re old friends, and he said “absolutely not!” That’s what his job as a readmissions coordinator is all about--helping people like me go back to school and finish.

Q. So what’s your game plan for getting your B.A. degree?

Cody helped me come up with a plan that works for me and my schedule, which is super busy, with work, especially now that I’m a new mom! But now I only have three more classes to finish! Cody has definitely been my cheer coach this time around!